How can I avoid infections while on Entyvio or Humira?

Posted by sus9 @sus9, Jun 1 4:40am

Hi, I had mild ulcerative colitis for four years, treated with mesalamine. It was going great, then, at the end of February that changed. I started having a major flare-up. I was able to get blood tests/stool test and eventually have a colonoscopy. It has progressed another 6-8 inches. I have moderate to severe colitis and will be starting Entyvio at the end of June hopefully. I’m on a prednisone taper right now, which is helping, and still taking the mesalamine as advised. I’m nervous about the Entyvio and it’s increased risk of infections. All infections? From the common cold to Covid to bacterial, internal?? But what choice do I have other than to take the next phase of medicine to help my condition and avoid certain foods/beverages?

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I have been on Entyvio infusions for 3 months and my symptoms are much improved. I’ve had no side affects. I too worry about my immune system being lowered so I wear a mask anytime I’m out in public just to cut down the risk of catching anything.

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That's such a good question, @sus9. Several medications such as Entyvio (vedolizumab) that are helpful can also lower your immune system's ability to fully protect you. This shouldn't make you fearful, but, as you are doing, get informed on how you can protect yourself.

@carolyne offered her approach. I'm also bringing in other members like @meeshka @ladaarts @buchansd @dval @mariajean03 @jjob73 who have experience with Entyvio to get their helpful tips.

Sus, I applaud you for doing your homework before starting a new medication.

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@colleenyoung

That's such a good question, @sus9. Several medications such as Entyvio (vedolizumab) that are helpful can also lower your immune system's ability to fully protect you. This shouldn't make you fearful, but, as you are doing, get informed on how you can protect yourself.

@carolyne offered her approach. I'm also bringing in other members like @meeshka @ladaarts @buchansd @dval @mariajean03 @jjob73 who have experience with Entyvio to get their helpful tips.

Sus, I applaud you for doing your homework before starting a new medication.

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Thank you. Now, I’ve been informed I will be going on Humira and not Entyvio because of insurance reasons. I hear I am more prone to infections on Humira. Are there people who can give me some insight in Humira?

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@sus9, the flavonols Kaempferol and Quercetin offer anti-inflamatory benefits for ulcerative colitis. . Alpha tocotrienol from red palm oil presents it's benefits for ulcerative colitis in the third link. The last link contains hopeful info for a possible new treatment that may eliminate fecal transplant.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34367139/
https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsomega.0c00804
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31474681/
https://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/2020/02/stanford-scientists-link-ulcerative-colitis-to-missing-gut-micro.html

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@sus9

Thank you. Now, I’ve been informed I will be going on Humira and not Entyvio because of insurance reasons. I hear I am more prone to infections on Humira. Are there people who can give me some insight in Humira?

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I updated the title to include Entyvio (vedolizumab) and Humira (adalimumab). 🙂

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@carolyne

I have been on Entyvio infusions for 3 months and my symptoms are much improved. I’ve had no side affects. I too worry about my immune system being lowered so I wear a mask anytime I’m out in public just to cut down the risk of catching anything.

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I have had 10 infusions since last year and have them scheduled until August so far. I do worry about catching viruses especially Covid. I religiously wear a KN95 mask whenever I am in a public place or crowd. That being said, I flew to Philadelphia and back, stayed in a hotel, for a graduation where I was with a crowd of no less than 6,000 people in a stadium. Very few had a mask on. I did not catch anything, nor did my family members, but we were super careful. I went to a family wedding Memorial Day weekend, all guests had to be vaccinated, be tested before the wedding, and wear a mask indoors. Ceiling fans ran in the dining room and all the windows were open. Guest were from Columbia, Australia, England and 4 corners of this country. Not one person got sick! We’ve checked! So, as long as everyone around you is on board for safety (and nothing is 100%), don’t stop living. Just be vigilant. I have had side effects with the Entyvio to the point of wanting to stop. But my doctor added cortisone to the mix which I get in the IV right before the Entyvio. It helps.

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